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Cape Schanck Lighthouse is on the southern tip of the Mornington Peninsula.  It is part of a triangle of Bass Strait lights, the other two being Cape Otway and Cape Wickham Lighthouses, of radio controlled lights and signals.

The tower was built in 1859 from dressed limestone and sandstone, and is painted white.  It was the second coastal light established in Victoria. It is considered by the Australian Maritime Safety authority to be the most original lighthouse under its jurisdiction, as the original mechanisms are still in place. An unusual feature of this lighthouse is its stone stairway rather than the usual wrought iron.

The present apparatus, installed in 1915, is a first order Chance Brothers lens.  Upgrades of this lantern were carried out in 1907, 1917 and 1940. The original clockwork mechanism is still in place, though the light is now turned by an electric motor. The lighthouse was renovated from the late 1970's to the early 1980's, with work including the refurbishment of the lantern.

The lighthouse is about 90 minutes drive from Melbourne along the Mornington Peninsula Freeway, Boneo Rd and Cape Schanck Rd which terminates at the lighthouse carpark (Melway 258 B10). Guided tours of the tower and museum are conducted on weekends.  There is an excellent Museum in the old Assistant Lightkeepers Quarters. Admission is charged. Accommodation is available in the Lighthouse Keepers cottage.

Location: 3830'S 14453E
Nearest Town: Rosebud
Operator: Australian Maritime Safety Authority
Built: 1859
Automated: 21 September 1987
Structure: Dressed limestone & sandstone tower
Open to public: Yes - entry fee
Access: Sealed road
Accommodation: Yes - lightkeepers buildings
Character: Fixed white sector with flashing red sector
Lens: 920mm first order Chance Brothers catadioptric lens 
Light source: 1000 Watt tungsten halogen lamp
Power source: Mains with diesel standby
Intensity: 1,000,000 CD
Height: 21 metres
Elevation: 100 metres
Range: 35 kilometres white light
30 kilometres red light

* Parks Victoria
* Lighthouses of Australia Inc
* Lighthouses: Australia
* Howes, M. et al (1999) "Victoria's National Parks - Explorer's Guide", See Australia Guides Pty Ltd
* Reid, G. (1988) "From Dusk to Dawn: A History of Australian Lighthouses", AGPS
* Ibbotson, J. (2001) "Lighthouses of Australia: Images from the End of an Era", Australian Lighthouse Traders


Photographed by K. Eggleston, 29 April 2001 Kristie Eggleston

Photographed by K. Eggleston, 31 October 1999 Kristie Eggleston


Refer to regional map at Wilmap for greater map detail.

Cape Schanck Lighthouse
Cape Schanck Road
Phone: (03) 5988 6184
Facsimile: (03) 5988 6251
Email: capeschanck@ozemail.com.au


The Cape Schanck Lighthouse is located about 75 km south of Melbourne, via the Nepean & Mornington Peninsula Hwys. The road leading to the Lighthouse is sealed, and there are toilet facilities, a kiosk, walking tracks, and interpretive signs and other information.

The lightstation, with its accompanying facilities, is operated by a private organisation. Guided tours of the tower and museum are conducted on weekends.  Admission is charged.  Accommodation is available in the lightkeepers cottage.


Lighthouses of Australia Inc Virtual Sorrento

Grant & Traceys' Lighthouse pages Victorian Coastal Council
Parks Victoria Cape Schanck Accommodation
Visit Victoria Garry Searle's Lighthouses Australia
Maria Grist's 1950s childhood at Cape Schanck

Page last updated:  27 December 2003

1999-2003 Kristie Eggleston. All rights reserved.
Email: kristie_eggleston@hotmail.com